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'Discipleship' in Mark's Gospel.

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Introduction

Explain what a study of St. Mark's Gospel can tell Christians about the nature of discipleship? In my essay I will be looking at the topic of 'Discipleship' in Mark's Gospel, and also what Jesus expected from his disciples. I will also be discussing the call of the first five disciples, how they responded to Jesus' call and what being a 'disciple' involves. The word 'disciple' means one who learns, the word 'apostle' means one who is sent out and the word 'discipleship' means one that is prepared to follow Jesus. Jesus chose twelve disciples to follow him; some say that this was deliberate. Others say that he did this to symbolise the twelve tribes of Israel. Also, that he called the twelve disciples to call the twelve tribes of Israel. I will now go on to talk about the call of the first five disciples and their responses towards Jesus. In the first chapter of Mark's Gospel (16-20) Jesus called four fishermen, firstly he called Simon and Andrew who were brothers; and then it was James and John who were also brothers. He said to them, "Come follow me and I will make you fishers of men". The four fishermen who Jesus called to follow him were very ordinary people who led ordinary lives, who may have also probably been illiterate. Even though this may have been the case they were still men who made a fairly good living. When Jesus said, "I will make you fishers of men", he meant that if they were to follow him, instead of catching fish, they would go out and preach the good news to both men and women, and tell them to spread the good news also. In the Old Testament, prophet of Jeremiah also talked about fishers of men and drawing people into God. These four fishermen responded immediately to Jesus' call which suggests they may have been prepared to follow Jesus if he called them. ...read more.

Middle

In Mark's Gospel in Chapter 14 :( 27-31, 66-72) Peter said to Jesus, when he predicts Peter will disown him, "Even if I have to die with you, I will never disown you". Then in 14:66-72 when a servant girl says to him that he knew Jesus he says, "I don't know this man you are talking about". And realises what he was done. This suggests that Peter was very confused about what was going to happen to Jesus and how it was going to happen. If Peter had known he would have been a bit stronger. But afterwards Peter tried his best and gave his all, but was later martyred in Rome. So basically the situation in which he was put in made him stronger than he was when he denied Jesus, because he wasn't at all prepared for that situation. Another incident by which the disciples were still learning to be disciples was in 4:35-41. In the Calming of the Storm when the disciples were with Jesus they asked him if don't you care if we drown, and Jesus then got up ad calmed the storm. He then asked them, "Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?" The disciples became terrified and asked each other, "Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!" This shows that the disciples were still growing in their understanding of who Jesus was and what he was capable of doing. Here, there is also a lack of faith in him, because it hadn't yet been clear to them that Jesus who was God's Son was able to perform such miracles, which is why when he calmed the storm, it was a big surprise to them. On another occasion when the disciples still had doubt about what being a disciple meant and what discipleship really means is in 9:33-35. Jesus asks them what they were arguing about and tells them, "If anyone wants to be first, he must be the very last, and the servant o f all". ...read more.

Conclusion

'Children can't be disciples so they can't be Christians either'. Do you agree? In this part of the essay, I will give my opinions on what I think about this statement. Also whether I agree or disagree with the above statement. I think that this statement is very un-Christian like, I also believe it is wrong, unrealistic and uncharitable. I say this because Jesus expected many things from his disciples; he expected them to leave their families, money, and jobs. For this t be expected of children is absolutely ridiculous. A disciple is a follower (one who learns), so in a sense we can say that children are stilling growing in their faith. However the cost of being a disciple for children is forgiving others and not stealing. Therefore, in an even bigger sense we can say that children are expected to give up their family, friends, money and expected to die, because it is unrealistic to do so. Also when a child is baptised it becomes a member of the Church, so it is wrong then to say that children cannot be Christians. In some way it seems quit cruel to say this. Children are either brought up to be Catholics, Methodists, Anglicans or another denomination; therefore they are still growing up their faith or even being into their faith. So how then can we say that children can't be disciples so they can't be Christians either? When being baptised as a child in a Catholic Church or others, it is the adult's choice of whether they would like their child to be baptised. However, in a Baptist Church they don't allow infant baptisms, although when a child becomes a teenager between the ages of 15 and 16 they have a choice as to whether they want to be baptised or not. I can say that the Baptist Church doesn't agree with baptism at a very young age. Therefore, we can say that Baptists might just agree with this statement. Stephanie Ogwuru 11A2 R.S Coursework Candidate No: 0469 Centre No: 14386 ...read more.

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